Saturday, May 18, 2024

New Music Monday: HopeCity Waters delves into soulful folk sound on new EP

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Victoria and Vancouver Island have a lot of musical talent, and Victoria Buzz wants to highlight some of the best and brightest local artists and bands.

Every Monday, there will be a fresh ‘New Music Monday’ article to help people find and support local artists and bands that are up-and-coming, well established or hidden gems!

For this endeavour, Victoria Buzz has partnered with our good friends at CFUV 101.9 FM, UVic’s campus radio station, to find and select the musicians and bands for this regular column.

This week, HopeCity Waters is the New Music Monday highlight!

HopeCity Waters is a five piece soulful folk act from right here in Victoria who just released their debut EP on Friday, March 15th.

This band formed from the ashes of two bands that recently dissolved, Maitarra and Naked by the Fire.

Members of these bands, Maita Waters, Jeremy Earley, Jacob Leger, and Ben DeCicco wanted to explore a softer, more gentle sound that could lead them to new places musically. 

Once they found their sound and recorded their new EP, they brought in an additional member, Bryden Amos, to the band to help fill out the sound. 

“We just found these kindred spirits in each other,” Waters told Victoria Buzz. 

She said that herself, Earley and Leger especially connected because they are all songwriters and found inspiration from the same genres of music and they already collaborate on hosting the monthly event, Folk Night at the Mint. 

When it comes to why they chose the name, HopeCity Waters, the band said that it came from a place of wanting to see its music scene flourish being a part of it. 

“For me it always resembles the city’s full of hope again,” Waters said. “And there’s something kind of clean and movement—it feels like the opposite of a bog.”

“I agree with that, it’s kind of loose and you want to find hope,” Leger added. 

He and Earley moved to Victoria from the east coast during the pandemic and said that they feel much more hopeful being here and having gotten through those hard times with this new opportunity to share music with the world. 


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The three-song EP features songs that were written for other projects initially, but never reached their full potential until HopeCity Waters reworked them and brought their true potential to the surface. 

One song, I Thought I’d Know By Now was originally written as a song for Earley and Leger’s previous project that the band said they really love because it is a heartfelt song written about a bizarre situation the duo found themselves in. 

“Essentially we were tree planting up north and we were in Smithers, a little town in BC and we had gone to this festival,” Leger explained. 

“We had this big group of, kind of rowdy people on a break from the planting season.”

Earley added that they thought the festival would be full of people who wanted to party with them but it turned out it was a small festival primarily for families and little kids.

“We thought it’d be a mushroom-type festival but it turns out the vibe was petting zoo,” Earley laughed. 

“But the song is also about a relationship kind of ending in the middle of that, all that was going on there,” Leger concluded. 

Listen to HopeCity Waters S/T EP on their Bandcamp, Spotify or Apple Music

CFUV is a non-profit campus and community radio station that plays a ton of local music of all kinds across Vancouver Island. If you like to support local music they are an amazing resource with a plethora of new local tunes in their arsenal. 

Right now, between March 15th and 22nd, they’ll be doing their annual Funding Drive, where they will have special shows and programming in order to help them raise money to operate the station.

“I don’t think I’ve ever seen a student radio station be so involved in the music scene both in and out of the campus, and I think that’s really pretty incredible,” said Leger. 

Waters added that everyone at the station, both the staff and volunteers are welcoming and want to share as much music as possible. 

“They’re just there to promote and support and get behind local bands,” she added. 

Tune into CFUV 101.9 FM on air or online and, if you can, donate to their Funding Drive

There are three CFUV produced concerts coming up as part of Funding Drive and HopeCity Waters just happens to be playing one of them along with Niloo, and Shark Bite Spite at Vinyl Envy on Friday, March 22nd. 

Let us know what you think of HopeCity Waters in the comments below.

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Curtis Blandy
curtis@victoriabuzz.com

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